Beth Kettel: Post-Point, and/or, The Sequential Tangential Potential
The Telfer Gallery presents first ever solo show by emerging Manchester-based artist
Beth Kettel’s artistic process embodies the very ideas that she seeks to convey in her work. In a seemingly non-discriminatory fashion, Kettel absorbs information from both physical and virtual realms to give a chaotic but elegant overview of what is to exist in our world of information overload. Like an improvised performance, a porous, multi-layered approach draws connections between disparate elements, preventing the work from falling into complete obscurity.
Often, the artist borrows from robust structural devices such as recipes, song writing and theatre to shake up the logic of her work and to inject an element of chance. In this show, the selected device is borrowed from the world of sport, namely the game of basketball.
‘The work isn't about basketball,’ she says, ‘but it is about finding connections between disparate experiences and ideas. Like on the internet where all this stuff is bashed together and one thing leads to another in a really tangential way – before you know it you don’t know what you’re looking at or how you got to that point.’
Perhaps Kettel’s basketball player character – with her assigned role and purpose – represents far more than just an anchor point for this exhibition. ‘Anything goes’ in our postmodern art world. Grand narratives no longer protect us; we must create meaning ourselves, and we have important decisions to make at every turn. Freedom is a blessing and a burden; in some respects, would it not come as a relief to be given a set of rules to help us navigate this world? Throwing in the basketball red herring draws attention to the arbitrary manner in which we come to encounter and consume information, something this exciting new talent explores in a fresh way.
The opening performance taking place at Wasps on Fri 24 Apr will incorporate a live reading with installation work.
Beth Kettle will take part in a collaborative event next month as part of AltMFA residency at Guest Projects, London. Find out more.